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Structural Description of the Interface of Pickering Emulsions Stabilized by Cellulose Nanocrystals

Abstract : The cotton cellulose nanocrystals (CNCs) used in this study are rod-like particles with dimensions in the nanoscale (195 nm long, 23 nm width and 6 nm thick) able to stabilize Pickering emulsions. The adsorption of CNCs at an oil-water interface has been investigated by small angle neutron scattering (SANS) with and without surface charge, and varying CNC concentration from 2 to 5 g/L. Average thicknesses of the interfacial CNC layer around the emulsion droplets of 7 and 18 nm were determined for charged and uncharged CNC, respectively, regardless of their concentration in suspension. This suggests that CNC particles lie as a monolayer varying in surface density. Using several phase contrast variations, the neutron wave vector (Q) dependence with the intensity showed that CNCs are in contact with the oil phase only via the surface of the CNC and not immersed in oil since the Porod behavior is observed over the whole Q-range revealing no deformation of the oil surface at a nanometer scale. This result promotes the postulate that the (2 0 0) crystalline plane of the CNC directly interacts with the interface.
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Fanch Cherhal, Fabrice Cousin, Isabelle Capron. Structural Description of the Interface of Pickering Emulsions Stabilized by Cellulose Nanocrystals. Biomacromolecules, American Chemical Society, 2016, 17 (2), pp.496 - 502. ⟨10.1021/acs.biomac.5b01413⟩. ⟨hal-02640238⟩



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